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December 29, 2018: State of the Barnyard Address

Raudi requested that she be allowed to make this year’s State of the Barnyard Address. I told her that this is usually done at the beginning of the New Year. She then stomped her foot impatiently and said that what needed to be said, needed to be said now. So I am breaking with tradition in letting Raudi have her say.

Thank you Alys, Pete. I am glad to have the opportunity to give this year’s State of the Barnyard Address. Tyra wanted to do this, but I told her (and I am right in saying) that she doesn’t yet have the breadth of experience or powers of observation that I do. Alys agreed, so here I go.

Raudi and Hrimmi
Raudi and Hrimmi

It has been a good year thus far. The hay was of varying quality – it reached an all time low in April, when the supplies ran low and Pete had to go and get more older hay. It had no nutritional value and tasted like Shredded Wheat. I know what Shredded Wheat tastes like because I ate a boxful that had been trashed when I was living over at Lazy Mountain. It was a tough place to live because it was so windy, but the food pickings were good. We once in a while had access to the garbage can and every so often would find something good, like the remains of Ben Crawford’s breakfast oatmeal. He didn’t eat instant; rather, it was the Irish Oatmeal, like what Pete and Alys had on our long rides in 2011 and 2013.

We got fresh hay from John DePriest in the spring – life was then good around here. Hay from John tends to be varied – some of it is stemmy timothy and some of it is grassy brome. It’s all good and we are most appreciative of the effort that it takes to pick up and relocate the bales to the barn.

Now, in the winter, Alys and Pete spread the hay out in the pen so we can’t eat it as fast. I would much rather have my forage piled up in the corner in the shelter so I can chow down fast, but I’m not going to complain. Walking around and grazing is supposedly good for me.

We also had a much-needed supplement change this year. We were all being fed Alaska Gold, Vitamin E, Biotin, and ground flax. However, things changed after Pete and Alys and our farrier Josh went to a barefoot trimming clinic. As I understand it, the clinician, Pete Ramey, said that Tinni needed copper and zinc added to his rations. So we all got copper and zinc supplements. This was most beneficial to Tinni, who for some time has had a weepy eye. After being on the copper for a while, it cleared up. Tinni had been getting intermuscular injections of Adequan, but after talking with Zach, our veterinarian, he went to getting intermuscular injections of something called Summit. Tinni’s since been much happier and spunkier than previously; in fact, so much so that he and Tyra are having a relationship.

Alys and Pete next put us all on a supplement called California Trace Plus, which contained all the above-mentioned supplements, except for flax. This is really good stuff, very palatable.

It is appearing as though the feed fare will be much the same in 2019. I hear we are going on a long trek. This is fine with me just so long as I get my seasonal dandelion greens.

Tomorrow I will talk about home schooling and our training regime.

Until then, bon appétit,


Next: 364. 12/30/18: The State of the Barn Address, Continued

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